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23-year-old varsity student set to become an MP

A 23-year-old independent candidate is poised to be the next Igembe South MP after preliminary results indicated he was leading.

By 6pm Wednesday, John Paul Mwirigi, a Bachelor of Education student at Mt Kenya University was leading with 19, 366 against Jubilees Rufus Miriti who had 15, 977 votes.

Throughout the day, his supporters thronged the streets of Maua town in early celebrations while expectant voters camped at the entrance of the constituency tallying centre waiting for announcement of results.

Speaking to Nation, Mr Mwirigi said he expressed interest in politics while in form three at Kirindine Day Secondary School.

“I had a dream where I was tabling a motion in Parliament while I was in form three. That is when I started asking my fellow students to start campaigning for me since I would need their vote in 2017. I have held leadership positions in school and in my neighborhood,” said Mr Mwirigi, who was wearing a shirt with a worn out collar.

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He says he has been campaigning on foot by visiting homesteads before he received support from boda boda riders.

If elected, Mr Mwirigi says his first agenda would be supporting agribusiness activities, promoting entrepreneurship and nurturing talents.

“Since I come from a humble background, I understand the issues that affect the residents. My key agenda will be transforming the lives of the people,” said the youthful candidate.

The sixth born in a family of eight says he still lives in a ‘granary’ (a raised house) and does not own land contrary to claims that he had sold his land for campaigns.

Other candidates in the race include Martin Kubai (MCC – 6,477 votes), former deputy governor Raphael Muriungi (DP – 2,202 votes) and Mithika Mwenda (PNU – 5,140 votes).